Posts Tagged ‘decorating’


[I had to find this article today because I’m finally getting my tree up this weekend. Normally, I like to have it up the weekend after Thanksgiving but between traveling, my etsy shops picking up and prepping for a craft show, this is the soonest I could manage. I always thought garland went on last but followed this instruction last year and it went pretty well. The big question is how a 17 month old will act with a decorated tree. I’ll keep you posted!]


(From About.com)

You’ve chosen your perfect Christmas tree, but now what?

Our tips on the next pages will give you ideas for setting up your tree, lighting it, keeping it fresh, and decorating it to be beautiful.

  • Keep Your Tree Fresh and Green
    Cut the stump of the tree with a fresh cut and set it in water immediately. A fresh-cut tree will absorb several quarts of water right from the start. So it’s important to check and refill the water level several times a day for the first week. You can cut down on frequency later. Be sure to place you Christmas tree in a stand that has a large water reservoir and keep it filled.
  • Christmas Tree Preservative
    You can prolong the life of your Christmas tree by mixing up a concoction of 1 quart water, 1/2 cup light corn syrup, and 1 teaspoon liquid bleach. You can also read information on caring for Christmas trees.
  • Putting Lights and Decorations on the Tree
    When decorating your Christmas tree, put lights on first, then garlands, then the ornaments.
  • Work From the Inside Out
    Start arranging Christmas tree lights on the branches near the base of the tree. Weave strings of lights along the branches “inside,” then move to the outer edges of the branches.
  • Placement of Ornaments
    Don’t hang all your ornament on the tips of the branches. Place ornaments and other decorations ‘inside’ your tree to add depth and interest.
  • Basic Ornaments for Fill
    Start by arranging the “filler ornaments” evenly spaced around the tree. This would include basic solid color balls that are easily found at discount stores in a wide range of colors to coordinate and enhance your decorating scheme. You’ll need about 20 “filler ornaments” for every 2 feet of Christmas tree.
  • Special Themed, Collectible Ornaments
    Mix one-of-a-kind special ornaments between the basic ornaments. Plan to use at least 10 special themed ornaments for every 2 feet of tree. As your collection grows, put the special ornaments closer together.

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My little one is still too young to really get excited about Christmas, so I am planning our family traditions now while he is so young in hopes that he will acquire the sense of wonder that I had when I was young. I absolutely loved Christmas preparations, decking the halls and baking so many yummy treats. My Aunt Nancy used to make Christmas cookies. She had gingerbread men, peanut butter blossoms, butter balls(russian tea cakes) and iced sugar cookies with dragees decorating them. My mother always prepared my paternal grandmother’s nut roll recipe. She would make raspberry, apricot, poppy seed and traditional walnut all frosted with yummy vanilla frosting. My mom also had these white feather wreaths she hung on the living room wall, porcelain angels that would hang on the lamps and these strange lantern-like gold garlands that would drape across the windows. We always had to have an artificial tree because my mom was allergic to the real ones. My fondest decoration was the plastic, glittery candy garland that used to hang in the kitchen doorway. Oh and then there were also the little plastic elves that everyone seemed to have. We always opened one gift on Christmas eve then we would go to bed and Santa Claus would come and leave us more presents. We always woke up early to see what Santa brought and then we would go to church. As we got older we would start going to midnight mass. My maternal grandmother was born on Christmas day so she would come over every year for dinner which usually included a ham with all the fixings. My husband’s family really didn’t have any strong traditions, the only thing he remembers are the handmade felt ornaments his aunt use to make. Those and this odd family concoction called hamloaf!? I have the recipe, I just don’t know if that is one tradition I want to encourage! :o) Over the next few months, I hope to share our traditions as well as some of my friend’s and fellow Christmas lovers!(and if I can dig out the old Stamblesky nut roll recipe, I might just share that too!)

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Add a little sugar and spice to your Christmas tree this year with this adorable gingerbread couple ornament! Personalized with permanent black ink by our professional Bronner’s artists at no additional charge, this charming gingerbread couple ornament is sure to be a treasured keepsake with your loved ones for years to come. With sparkling glitter accents, this personalized gingerbread couple ornament is 4½” tall and crafted of clay dough. Comes ready to hang with a red ribbon.
14 characters/spaces allowed for names.
If you would like to order your ornament plain, please do not fill in the blank below. Please select the inset image for a view of this ornament without personalization.Personalized Gingerbread Couple Ornament

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Christmas Tree Decorating Tips

Tree decorating themes vary widely according to individual tastes. Many people like to decorate with a specific color or color combination. Here are a few basic tips, which may be helpful to you. The suggested sequence for decorating a tree is as follows:

  1. Lights
  2. Garland
  3. Tree Trims
  4. Ornaments
  5. Tree Top and Skirts

Tree Trim Tips

Tree Height
35 to 40 24″ to 3′ 30 pieces
70 to 80 36″ to 4′ 42 pieces
200 to 400 50′ to 55″ 35-50 pieces
400 to 600 85′ to 90′ 50-75 pieces
500 to 700 100′ to 110′ 75-100 pieces
600 to 800 130′ to 145′ 175-225 pieces
800 to 1000 185′ to 200′ 200-300 pieces

Regular Doorway
18′ to 25′
Double Doorway
20′ to 35′
Small Picture Window
18′ to 25′
Large Picture Window
20′ to 35′
Fireplace Mantle
18′ to 25′
Ceiling Decorations
50′ to 100′

C-7 & C-9 Lights*:

To calculate the amount of C-7 and C-9 lights for your tree, you may want to do the following:

HxD (divided by 2) for trees up to 7 feet.
HxD (divided by 3) for trees 7 1/2 feet and up.

For example, a 6 foot tree with a diameter of 45 inches would be as follows:

6×45 (divided by 2) = 135 lights

*Not all C-7 and C-9 lights are approved for artificial trees, but Cool Bright by GE is a good choice. Check packaging.

Do’s and Don’ts of Lights:

Never hook mini lights and C-7s or C-9s end to end. Connect only the same light sets together. They must be on their own outlet. This is also true when hooking your treetop to your light sets. the 3 outlet cords work very well in this situation. Do not hook more than 3 sets of lights together end to end. This can cause overloaded circuits and may blow fuses in your light sets. Some lights are commercial grade and you can connect up to six lights together. (Check packaging). Discard damaged sets (broken/cracked sockets, frayed/bare wires or loose connectors). Turn off all indoor lights on trees and other decorations when you go to bed or leave the house.

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My Christmas Tree skirt!
Starlight mints!(my Favorite) I have many more mints to make. I’m hand-stitching everything so it’s taking me awhile to get it done!So far so good!

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I have other ‘gingerbread’ ornaments I’m working on but these were my first few. Finished but missing hangers. I can’t wait ’til I get to the snowflakes!

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Ginberbread ManGingerbread Man


I love Christmas and there are so many crafts you can do with the kids from toddlers and up like paper gingerbread men!


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need


Step One

cut out a gingerbread man shape with brown construction paper.

Step Two

cut out a larger gingerbread man with red construction paper with scissors that have zig zag or deckle edges.

Step Three

Have the kids glue the brown gingerbread man on top of the red gingerbread man

Step Four

Bring out different craft pieces like googly eyes, stickers, piper cleaners and buttons.

Step Five

You can also cut out eyes or pieces to make a vest and shorts or color with markers.

Step Six

Decorate and get creative! You can add glitter, cut a hole on top and make yarn loop and hang on the tree or window.

Overall Tips & Warnings

  • When doing crafts with toddlers this is a great time to encourage independence and creativity and simple crafts like this gingerbread man give you just that opportunity to let them go on their own.
  • Make sure you are using safety scissors if you allow them to cut any part of the craft.

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